What's Your Why?

Hear from our amazing members below on why they CrossFit.

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A six year loyal member of RITE. 


I know that I’m at my best when I start my morning moving. I don’t take this for granted at all; my mom has been in a nursing home, on the same unit, in the same room, for over a year. She won’t leave the floor. She barely leaves her room. I get to move, I get to be outside. All that other stuff simply doesn’t matter.

I’m inspired by many people around me- the women who are giving it hell every day, making relationships matter, making real things matter, and truly enjoying life. I’m inspired by those who challenge me, who question me, and those that are in it with me. Whether it’s family, friends, people that are in my life, all of that matters to me. 

It’s been 6 years since I started. I called Christi almost in tears because I was overweight, and in my mind, too slow to run. I couldn’t do a burpee. I barely lifted the trainer bar. We all start somewhere. And, to start and keep going is truly part of the journey. Enjoy your life, the people in your life, and moving along your path.


I CrossFit because… I have experienced abusive relationships throughout my life. It took me awhile to realize and accept that I struggle with anxiety/ depression as a result of these experiences. CrossFit has given me strength and confidence to help me overcome my demons. Making progress in the gym reminds me that I am not limited to my past or the person I was, and no one else can define who I am or determine my potential. CrossFit empowers me to seek growth and transformation. I am creating a life that is not defined by my past, but is instead, defined by my vision for the future. Becoming the best version of myself starts by showing up to the box nearly every day and giving each work out everything I have. Own the morning and you own the day. Own the day and you own your life. I am no longer the victim; I am the victor of my story.


In 2014 I was introduced to CrossFit by my daughter Karli. She had moved to Albany, NY and started CrossFit as a way to make friends. I had gained some weight and was looking for a way to improve my health and she suggested I give CrossFit a try. I had lost several uncles to heart disease and I was taking medication for blood pressure and cholesterol. I fell in love with CrossFit, not just for the workout but for the community of people that surround and push you to be better every day. I’ve lost over 20lbs since starting this journey and my blood pressure and cholesterol are excellent. 

My children and grandchildren are my inspiration. My son is in Seattle and my daughter is in Albany and I want to maintain my health so that they won’t have to worry about me. CrossFit also provides a connection to Karli that is hard to describe. CrossFit gives us a “reason” to communicate regularly. I share my successes and failures with her and she encourages and supports me and I do the same for her. I know she is proud of me, and that feels good.


I CrossFit because… I know my worth and for one hour (almost) every day, I prove to myself that I am better than I was yesterday. 

Eight years ago, I had a parent make me feel like I meant nothing to him. I was weak and felt like my life had no meaning. I told myself no man or person was ever going to belittle

me and make me feel like he did that day. 

CrossFit has taught me the

difference between an intention and an action. Every time I step into RITE, I improve my mental and physical toughness surrounded by

people who want the very best for themselves, too. 

The box holds me

accountable for showing up for myself and constantly reminds me to never settle for less than I deserve. I fought to be the person

I am today, and I am proud because there is no turning back from here. Yes, I still have bad days, as anyone, but nothing compares to that day eight years ago. I truly believe when you start

seeing your worth, you will find it harder to stay around the people who do not. So do yourself a favor today- show up, stay motivated and kick some butt because no one is going to do it for you.

The Holl's Part 1

Ladies first! (Meghan)

I crossfit because punching children is frowned upon. Okay, don’t judge me, but these kids suck the life out of me. Crossfit is something I can focus on outside of my daily life and accomplish things I never thought possible. Kindergarten is like Groundhog day, I say the SAME CRAP multiple times a day, this at least is something that is different. 

We have both gained so many friendships in this community where work and workout out are synonymous. Shared suffering brings people together in a crazy way, and I can still tap into my inner competitive side.

I make myself move; I have zero energy at the end of each day and this helps bring me back to life. John and I make each other come (99% of the time I am pushing him to come, which is shocking, I know). Although he doesn’t appreciate partnering with me on Saturday’s, it has helped strengthen our marriage in more ways than one (mainly patience). 

And we have also experienced many firsts together: our first (of many) Saturday WOD’s without speaking the whole way home, our first Murph, our first ‘Why the hell are you wearing those short white shorts?” argument, and most recently, our first experience of me peeing my pants during a rope climb, which everyone now knows about!

I couldn’t imagine my life without this place or all of the people in it!


The Holl's Part 2

Up next, John! And in one word: FEAR

Fear of what I would look like if I didn’t do CrossFit. Scary enough already.

Fear of my wife leaving me if I didn’t go with her.Just a general fear of Mr. Dugan.

Fear of having a body that looks like a bag of milk. But, also a fear of missing out on going through absolute hell (I truly do hate working out, if anyone wasn’t aware) with an amazing group of people to come out on the other side with smiles on our faces, knowing what we just went through together. Our community is so unique and our bond is something that can’t be replicated.

My final why is the experience that Meg and I have together while we’re there. It certainly tests us at times (see Saturday’s), but helps our bond grow even stronger. Oh and I want to live a long time for our little pepita that is making her debut this fall.

CrossFit has given me the confidence to know that no matter how shitty things can appear (see Murph), you can get through it. And chances are, you’ll feel a million times better afterward. My most hated 10 minutes of the day are on my way to the gym, but my most rewarding time is when that clock hits 0:00. CrossFit gives me the structure and instruction that I need to stay in (semi) shape. I don’t think I mentioned that I’m not really a fan of working out, so CrossFit is my accountability check.

I’ve made some OK friends along the way too.

I can tell you what body inspires me to move my body and that’s Brian Bobeck. What an Adonis. I’m probably only like 5% away from getting there (rough estimate). Actually, if Melissa, Erin and Bobeck had a love child, that would be the ultimate inspiration. Just barely coming in second, I need to look no further than my wife. Homegirl is still killing it. Even with my spawn cultivating mass daily inside her, she is still smoking me in workouts and runs. And she’s a smoke show to boot. Definitely married up.


I started CrossFit in 2017 and I’ve been hooked ever since! 

I have dealt with depression and anxiety since I was a teenager. Exercise 

has always been a key component in monitoring and maintaining my mental health. As an adult, I’ve always practiced my fitness routines solo, whether it was running or going to the gym. I love the team mentality and camaraderie of CrossFit. I feel supported by my fellow teammates: I push myself harder because of them. The enthusiasm is invigorating! 

I love how CrossFit celebrates strength, especially in young women. I used to lift weights when I was younger and I had no idea what I was doing. This sport offers guidance to young female athletes in a way that was not available to me. I’m grateful for the ability to participate in CrossFit and I am especially grateful for the people at CrossFit Rite. I felt like I was home as soon as I walked through the door. Thank you for welcoming me with open arms!


Why do I CrossFit? That’s easy, I CrossFit for me.

I have always believed that working out is a necessity not a luxury. At first I thought it was the new fad, like step aerobics was (when I was young). Funny how things change. I went to those classes 3 times a week for years. There were others in my class, but at the end of those four years I knew no one. The instructor never spoke to me. We went in, did our hour class and left.

I walked into the box almost 5 years ago and these athletes have become some of my best friends and I know every instructor personally. I am not Bill’s wife or Wendell and Garrett’s mom; I am the old lady that still works out. I have embarrassed myself by falling on my face (on the sidewalk!) while trying to catch a wall ball being tossed to me and I have experienced sheer joy when I looked up after one of the open workouts to see the entire box cheering for me.

We have celebrated life and death together and everything in between. We lift each other up and call each other out. We keep each other accountable, not only during workouts but with our community. If it is important to one member it is important to everyone. We row for Alzheimer’s, and burpee for Autism. We hero wod for those that I have not met but have died for me. The people in this box have made me better; have made me want to be better. I hope I have affected them in the same way. So why do I CrossFit? I selfishly CrossFit for me.


CrossFit is my medicine! A year ago, after the third doctor reiterated that I have serious osteoporosis in my hips and lower back (not osteopenia as I wanted to believe), it finally sunk in that I had to do something about it. The medicines available were not a path I was willing to take, nor did I want to go down the other path of becoming crippled by the deterioration. I knew my daughter Molly had had significant improvement in her bone density from CrossFit, but…

My daughter had been trying to talk me into trying CrossFit for a couple of years and I thought it was not something I could do. Insane workouts, I thought. She kept trying to encourage me… sending YouTube videos of other (older) ladies doing it, telling me “it’s highly scalable, Mom. You can do it!”. It was during a visit to a CrossFit gym in Italy with Molly that I saw how scalable it is in person.

Upon my return home last June, I called CrossFit Rite and started OnRAMP with Christi. (Molly was familiar with Christi and her coaching technique and knew I would be in good hands!) I could not do a squat when I started. And I literally fell on my face twice trying to attempt a bear crawl. But, I got back up and have not looked back.

This amazing community of beautiful people has been nothing but supportive and encouraging! I am so grateful to be a part of it. I keep getting stronger every day, surprising myself with what I can do now and looking forward to seeing just how much I can accomplish tomorrow. I can stand for hours without back pain. My energy level has increased. Everything has improved! I even have muscles now! (Well, we all have them. Mine were barely discernable.)

CrossFit is scalable and great for everybody! Now I see no reason why the second half of my life cannot be the best half.


I CrossFit because… 

I am fearfully and wonderfully made!

Psalm 139:14

God created our human bodies to do amazing physical things! It’s an incredible gift that I never want to take for granted! CrossFit allows me to honor Him by taking care of my temple (1 Corinthians 6:19-20), and for me, it’s a form of worship to our Creator!

He also doesn’t want us to do this life alone, so the community aspect of CrossFit fills my soul and brings me so much joy! 

CrossFit strengthens my physical body and my spiritual walk. It affords me the opportunity to build relationships inside and outside of the box and shine His light to those around me!

CrossFit also often serves up a heavy helping of humble pie, and that keeps me grounded! No other sport or activity has given me such a strong desire to pursue it!

One of my favorite fitness quotes comes from Jimmy Pena, author and founder of Prayfit, “Grace removes the burden of trying to perfect a body that won’t last, yet grace is the reason to honor God with it every day that it does.” Can I get an Amen?!?


How has CrossFit changed your life?

I have always exercised ever since I was young, but when we started having a family it became more difficult to find time to fit in a workout. When I would workout, it was usually by myself and the workouts were really the same things that I had done my whole life. Lift upper body, run, repeat… I was in a rut and needed a change. CrossFit has been great because we are surrounded by a community of great people and the push I get from others cannot be replicated working out on my own. It also challenges me to do things that I would otherwise not do (i.e. lifting my chicken legs).

Before CrossFit, I was taking blood pressure medication, and today I am happy to say I no longer need to take it and my blood pressure is under control from diet and exercise. It has really had a very positive influence on my overall health. 

Who or what inspires you to move your body?

I’m inspired by Emily who gives it hell every day. I cannot ever come close to matching her energy and competitive drive, but she really inspires me to get up and move my body. Sometimes this includes a firm nudge from her when the alarm goes off before 5am every weekday or a lecture of how it is gross to be leastmode. I am also inspired by my children to show them that it is important to take care of your body and use the gifts that God has given us.


Growing up, I was always one of the most overweight kids in my class. I graduated high school the heaviest I have ever been (and thankfully have never returned), with no strength to show for it. Grade A Couch Potato. Suffice it to say, I’ve spent a lifetime of abusing my body with food and making sure it metabolically sucks. I’ve tried running and lifting some weights in college with one of my best friends, but nothing ever habit-forming. A marriage and couple kids later, enter CrossFit.

Although I am not as thin as I’d like to be, I a) don’t care as much anymore, because b) I’m the strongest and most capable I’ve ever been, c) I’m the most flexible I’ve ever been, d) I have the best posture I’ve ever had, and e) I have the most confidence I’ve ever had. The confidence that I have gained from CrossFit has spilled into my personal life at home, as well as my professional life. It has been life changing.

It all started when my wife, Anna, convinced/told me to join CrossFit and start going at 5:30a several years ago. I knew only one other person (who has since moved away), but soon fell in love with the whole 5:30a crew. At first, the motivation was just moving/working out to lose weight (given my history), and try to get stronger doing it. I loved watching my strength grow rapidly from my meager beginnings, but as the years wore on and I grew older/more mature, the motivation behind my ‘why’ evolved.  Everyone who has kids knows that they’re great at having near-mythological opinions of who you are and what you’re capable of. I know my son would call me strong no matter how strong I actually am, because I’m his dad. Which 7 year old doesn’t think their dad is strong? I’ve decided that I want to work hard so that I can live up to the love and confidence that my children have in me. I don’t want them to just *think* I’m strong, I want to *be* strong. I want to be able to carry them longer, further than anybody else. When the going gets tough, or my body is tired, I want to know, and them to know, that I’m able to push through longer and harder than anybody else. I want to serve my family the best that I can, and CrossFit has afforded me the ability to give more of myself. For them, for my wife, and for others that may need me.


How has crossfit changed my life?

The community and culture behind Crossfit saved my life. The philosophy that strong people build other strong people is universal regardless of the box, city or state. If you show up and do the work you will eventually leave with a few good friends and some extended family.

Who or what inspires you to move your body?

Seeing growth in the people I train with inspires me.


Why I Crossfit: I’ve seen so many of my friends become moms and completely give up all of their hobbies/interests, going out with friends, going to the gym, date nights and passions because it was either too hard to bring kids to or their kids didn’t like it. Their whole world revolves around what their kids are doing or what their kids want to do.

I love my kids, but I saw how draining that is. And how identity is lost. Conversations became only about kids. I knew that wasn’t for me. I needed to keep up with what I love to do.

I Crossfit for me. It’s my hobby. It’s my interest. It allows me to get an hour of “me” time to take care of myself. Importantly it’s something Ben and I enjoy doing together. It has given me a great community to be apart of, the opportunity for an occasional girls night out with the best 9:30am ladies, and a date night with Ben… well date morning.


Strong Women Raise Strong Women!

I have been blessed to be the mom of 2 wonderful and wild little girls. Everyday I strive to show them strength. CrossFit helps me by gaining physical and mental strength. My girls can see my strength when I pick them up or give them horsey rides. They can see my strength when I’m doing a workout, either at home or at the gym, and I am struggling but not quitting. I want my girls to see that strong is beautiful, strong is powering through struggles, strong is being mentally tough everyday. Nothing makes me prouder when I hear Becca say she wants to come to the gym or waves at the gym when we drive by. She knows the gym is a special place for mommy. CrossFit helps me be strong and show my girls the meaning of strength in all its forms. 

I also see this phrase every single day when I’m at CrossFit RITE. When I started CrossFit, I wanted to workout with other people (I had been working out at home). I never would have imagined I’d gain a circle of friends. The women of RITE are always raising each other up, pushing each other further, praising accomplishments, and sharing in troubles. I have met so many strong women that inspire me everyday! (I don’t mean to leave out the fellas, you all are inspiring, too!).


I remember one of the last things my Father ever said to me as he walked into my house, “Marko – you look good!!!!” A genuine look of shock and pride upon his face. He would pass away months later after a 15 year battle with Parkinsons, and this comment sticks with me every time I feel like giving up.

I started CrossFit about 8 months prior to that day and had begun my journey back to being physically fit.

I had always been slightly overweight as long as I could remember, but that never really slowed me down physically. I was a three sport Varsity Athlete in High School and played football in college. Once my college career was over, that’s when the problems began to emerge. Over the course of the next ten years I allowed myself to balloon in weight, develop unhealthy, in fact, probably deadly eating habits and become generally all around unhealthy. Tipping the scales at over 360# at that point, I knew that my future was not guaranteed anymore and I had to make some changes. In the two years since I started CrossFit I have lost a little over 120 pounds and have improved the quality of my life. I use my body everyday to provide for my family and play with my kids. 

My kids are my why…. Why do I CrossFit? 

  • So I can walk my daughter down the aisle someday
  • So I will know my grandkids
  • To fend off long term disease and illness
  • To have as many moments with my loved ones as I can.

I wear a wristband to remind me of this journey – 1 Corinthians 6 19:20

“Do you not know that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own; you were bought at a price. Therefore honor God with your bodies.”


I was introduced to CrossFit by a couple of colleagues, and absolutely fell in love. A few months later I found RITE. The vibe in our box is amazing, and it became almost an addiction. A good one! 

My kids inspire me to keep moving and to stay happy and CrossFit enables it!


I CrossFit because it makes me a better version of myself.

In Spring of 2016, I randomly discovered CrossFit through an old friend. After a few years of “adulting”, I knew I needed to add something to my often mundane day to day grind. I found myself in such a rut and was overall not in a healthy place physically or mentally. At my fundamentals class, I was humbled within minutes.
I grew up playing sports year round. But as I got further into high school, so much was changing around me that I ultimately quit everything. At the time, I didn’t realize the positive impact exercise has on a person mentality. I had just assumed that chapter in my life was closed.

CrossFit has helped me fill a hole in my life that was there for so long. Fitness has since become a top priority of mine and I have fallen love with what CrossFit does for my mind, body and soul.

As a new stay at home mom of 2, CrossFit is the one hour I spend everyday doing something for myself. I’ve gotten back a part of myself that I haven’t known for a long time. I am regaining confidence and self love that I’m not sure I’ve ever had as an adult. CrossFit has undoubtably made me a better wife, mother and person. I find myself with more patience, more compassion, and more inner peace.

I joined RITE in July 2019 (after leaving my job in the city, I was looking for a box closer to home). I have been welcomed with open arms into such a kind, encouraging, fun community. The camaraderie in this box is nothing short of amazing. I feel motivated every day and am so lucky to have already met many wonderful people who inspire me to work harder, get stronger and be healthier.

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